Julian Ruck

The Welsh haven’t got a word for ‘entrepreneur’

I’ve sometimes been involved – peripherally, I stress, in organizing festivals and similar occasions. Some have been more successful than others. The reasons for success or failure are not always clear. However, I would hope to persuade you that the misfortunes of Mr. Julian Ruck, Author and Tragedian, and his Kidwell-e Festival, present us with some useful object lessons.

51 thoughts on “The Welsh haven’t got a word for ‘entrepreneur’”

  1. Tragedian? That’s a new one! I commend your imagination. No doubt the Kidwell-e would have been a raging success had it nobbled the tax-payer, which is precisely what Laugharne and Dinwfwr did – indeed both more or less paid people to attend!

    The Welsh disease of tax-payer subsidy and grant is alive and well, which is why of course there is no such word as ‘Entrepeneur’ in Welsh economnic endeavour.

    Julian Ruck

    PS Of course had the Kidwell-e been a subsidised Welsh language extravaganza, well now……….

  2. You are wrong of course. One instance. Our son is running a Community Magazine along with two other businesses attached to it. He is also with a friend, who are both in their twenties running a Vegetarian Food Buisness. The food which they cook themselves and go around Produce Markets and Swansea Market selling and promoting it. This they do without any Grants, Subsidies or help from the Banks. As well as trying to bring up a family. So please don’t put down those who are trying just for the sake of having a dig against the Welsh Language. There are people out there working hard to be Entrepeneurs. Praise them and support them, not denegrate their work to run down Wales. They are here and they work damn hard without gutter snipping from people who couldn’t care less about Wales.

  3. It’s a French word. The Germans have their own word for entrepreneur, but not the English. Why is there no English word for entrepreneur?

  4. I’m obliged to Pads for affording Julian a little lesson in etymology. Had my headline been printed in that fabled typeface of ironics, Julian might have recognized an apocryphal remark attributed to a succession of worthies from Alfred Mond to Keith Joseph. In more recent versions of the legend, Donald H. Rumsfeld is made to ask why the French don’t have a word for ‘entrepreneur’.

    This gaffe by Julian relates rather nicely (stricto sensu) to a point I will expand later in this discussion. For the time, however, it will be more germane to draw the more general lessons from Julian’s trials and tribulations with the Kidwell-e Festival.

  5. Publicity is one of the strangest games in town – or out of town, come to that. (How true that was, how very true.) You know for a truth universally acknowledged that half your budget goes to waste, but have no way of determining which half.

    In the instant case, it would seem that rather more than half the budget of the Kidwell-e Festival went to waste. Many people in the area (no names, no pack drill) were completely unaware of it. Although the Festival had been mentioned in a number of respected papers and magazines (and also in the ‘New York Daily News’) most of the publicity seemed to have been generated by Julian himself. And, judging by what he has been saying, he was not entirely clear who his audience were.

    It was, however, plain who were not members of the audience he envisaged.

  6. Well, I want to know in what way Julian is represented by Nurnberg associates literary agents (because he isn’t – though he keeps writing that he is, despite not featuring on their list), and which Welsh publishers have turned him down. Then I want to know whether the judges of his Kidwelly E-book prize actually judged the book his website claims they did (they didn’t, so it’s not clear why he claims they did), and after that I want to know what Catherine Zeta-Jones replied to the story he put about that she was going to star in a film of one of his abysmally-written novels. After that, and only after that, would I like to know why, for a man who who has been rejected by the anglo-Welsh literary so-called establishment, he seems to blame everything on the Welsh language (about which he has made some startlingly unpleasant and bigoted comments).

  7. This brings me on to my next point. Julian clearly doesn’t welcome anybody who speaks Welsh, or loves that language although not speaking it. Neither does he wish to receive people who enjoy most of the writings in English of contemporary Welsh writers. Nor, come to that, does he seem to envisage conversing with those who observe the norms of civilized conduct.

  8. He is also the author of his own wikipedia entry and amazon author page (where he lays claim to legendary amounts of drinking and shagging – what and who, or perhaps who and what is another matter), and almost certainly of his amazon ‘reviews’. He has also been roundly rejected by a slew of English publishers and agents, which is why I was puzzled to see his attack on Welsh-speakers and the Welsh language. If there’s one constituency that has nothing to do with Mr Ruck’s complete lack of success as a writer, it’s Welsh-speakers.
    Which brings me onto the matter of his alleged sales figures…
    But another time. Let’s give him the chance to respond to the questions about his ‘agent’ and his ‘never having submitted anything to Welsh publishers’ shall we?
    (I know him – a little, but enough, see.)

  9. Since I know my friend Julian reads this, I am puzzled by his uncharacteristic, believe me – wholly uncharacteristic – silence on the above matters.

  10. These are interesting assertions. We look forward to Julian’s comments.

    Meanwhile, I’d like to examine the matter of local connections. This is, in fact, very important for large occasions casting their net much wider than the locality. The approach of the National Eisteddfod is very interesting in this perspective.

  11. Since Julian isn’t coming out to play, I thought I’d cast an eye over his website, where, it seems, most of his fiction gets written. I happened on his ‘scathing’ , ‘gloves off’ attack on Riot communications, who are paid by the Welsh books people to promote Anglo-Welsh publishers (the same publishers, I assume, who have turned Julian down). Our Joolz says that it’s run by ’3 Welsh girls’ (he wouldn’t call them women – you see, Joolz likes a bit of slap and tickle sexism, a few jokes about women’s arses etc.). I humbly looked them. Ah! I said to myself , it’s run by 4 people, only one of whom is Welsh and the other grew up partly in Wales. The other two are not Welsh. You, Tim, I believe corrected Julian, only to have your correction eradicated from the comments bar. This isn’t the first time a fact has interfered with our Joolz’s world view. I have been enjoying Jewels from Julian, a kind of homage site to Mr Ruck, though Mr Ruck has threatened that with legal action. Funny that the old bean gives it out but can’t take it. I am considering erecting my own homage site to Mr Ruck, which will subject his claims to the kind of respectful scrutiny they deserve.
    Riot communications – or Roit as Joolz calls them with his usual misspelling and apostrophe-scattering abandon – are finalists in PR weekly’s PR company of the year. If Mr Ruck had used them instead of Palamedes for his ill-fated joke of a Kidwell-E, it might have been less of a car crash.

  12. Our Jules, who is studiously avoiding addressing my questions on this blog, has now lashed out at people whop write books about Jews and Palestine. To be precise, he is attacking Jon Gower and Jasmine Donahaye, who are due to speak together soon at the Dylan Thomas Centre on 18 Sept. I very much hope Julian goes and challenges them: he wouldn’t last five minutes with proper writers, they’d slice him to pieces.
    Re Lanelli – sudden silence from Joolz on the Llanelli launch of the Bent Brief. Was no-one there Julian? You tweeted about it every five minutes beforehand, then nothing. Not a peep. What happened?
    Seren and Parthian – have either of these publishers ever turned you down Julian? I think we should be told.

  13. Where’s Julian, our voluble friend? Refusing to come out and answer my questions about his agent and his submissions to Welsh publishers? I have a few more for him, not least some further clarification of his never having ‘paid a single penny’ to publish any of his own books.
    Come now Julian, be a man!
    You’ll understand that I won’t leave these comments on your own blog because you’ll delete them.

  14. Thank you, Welshnot, for your interesting messages. They either present significant assertions which, if substantiated, cast a new light on some of Julian’s Internet activity; or raise points with which I hope to deal later; or expand some of the discussion so far. Julian’s remarks about women are, indeed, discouraging both to them and to those men who have any regard for them. By the same token, I would feel unable to encourage children to attend Julian’s events.

    Later tonight, I hope to expand on my point about the importance of local connection.

    I am disappointed that Julian seems, despite having accepted my invitation to enter debate on these matters, to have dropped out. I shall copy this message onto his blog, in hope of persuading him to rejoin us,

  15. Tim, your generous offer to invite our friend Julian back to the debate – he of the dickswingingly macho promise to take on all comers – seems not to have materialised on his blog. He is obviously censoring it. Too busy thinking about his signing at WH Smith’s in Kinston (sic.). We know those signings, Julian and I: you phone the shop, they let you have a table not too close to the entrance, and you stand there trying to flog your self-published books while people buy their mags, fags and weekend papers.
    Did Julian call them, did they call him, or did he get his ‘agent’ to do it? Well, I know it wasn’t the third of these, and I doubt it was the second. What’s left Joolz, what’s left?

  16. This is all very puzzling. Why challenge so many people to join contention, and then slink away from an invitation to rational debate?

    Can you let us know why you believe the third explanation to be unlikely?

  17. Local connections, as I said, can be crucial. The National Eisteddfod, for example, always has a local committee of volunteers in a forthcoming locality. They set about preparing as soon as the locality is announced. They organize fundraising events, publicize all aspects of the Eisteddfod, and engage the community at large in the preparations. Judging by reported lack of local awareness of the Kidwell-e Festival, Julian and his associates failed to involve the community of the immediate locality. This was, I submit, a serious error.

  18. Another important point is that the expression of all written matter should be of an acceptable standard. Thus it should eschew mere vulgar abuse which, while offensive (as indeed much of Julian’s blog indeed is) will certainly not lower any of his targets in the eyes of right-thinking people. It should also, especially if it concerns a literary occasion, meet proper linguistic standards. Julian’s erratic spelling and pronunciation, quite simply, do not do this. I would recommend that he invest in ‘The Oxford Guide to Style’, which many of us find very helpful.

  19. Finally, if the organizers of an event believe that contentions may arise from contractual issues, they should avoid publishing statements that could make it harder to resolve the matter expeditiously. It is not uncommon for some, or all, of the parties concerned, to be out of pocket if a festival does not go as well as planned. Maintaining a working trading partnership for the future is, I submit, more valuable than putative vindication from litigation. If the Kidwell-e Festival is to rise from its ashes, its protagonist will need to moderate his tone.

  20. WIkipedia can be a bit of a conundrum, knowing that some people write their own entries and, on occasion, police them rigorously. There are those who use it in order to pursue particular goals – rather like the use of print, in fact, but much more volatile. What to do? My policy is not to do anything to my Wikipedia entry or, indeed, even to comment on it.

  21. I take it that this discussion has now run its course. This is a pity, since I’d hoped to elicit responses from people with experience in organizing festivals. In addition, Julian has referred to some interesting and important matters, such as sponsorship for the arts, self-publication, and accountability. Perhaps we can discuss these separately some other time.

  22. I am very disappointed in this lack of response from Julian. I know of course that the reason he is not responding is that all our points – from his alleging to have an agent when he doesn’t to his claiming never to have been turned down by welsh publishers when he has – are close to the bone, and that they go to the heart of his motivations for his ill-written and embittered attacks on writers, institutions and, bizarrely but with a well-worn and puerile bigotry, the Welsh language (he’s been caught out at this before, though).

    In the case of his ruckus with the 3 tenors, he turns their complaint – namely that he made them come to a festival with no audience and then didn’t pay them – into an attack on the Welsh language, sneering at the fact they speak Welsh, and then pretending that he’s being persecuted for standing up for English speakers against a Welsh cabal. His whole piece ripples with anti-Welsh bile, while his attempts at irony (‘welsh language songbirds’ etc) are risible. He then blames the whole of Wales for his ballsup, like some kind of maltreated Messiah, and starts posting about how Wales isn’t ready for his glory, how his festival will rise again etc.

    The man is a first order buffoon. I feel we owe him a homage site , but also one that patiently corrects many of his errors, and perhaps indulges in a little friendly literary criticism here and there of his oeuvre. Shall we discuss this Tim and Alun?

  23. Thus Julian Ruck (in a blog entry where a little earlier he claims that only 1% of Welsh speakers are literate in said language – when challenged calmly on this he insults the challenger, but that is another matter). As I said, thus Julian. And it is sheer poetry:

    “Come on, let’s see your ’intellectual’ mettle once and for all, let’s see how good you really are away from the Mabinogi and work that no-one reads apart from those who shine in coteries of five, let’s see how you operate away from the cosy sycophancy of your tidy lecture theatres, squeaky clean tutorial rooms and the sweet elitist, unchallenging escapism of meeting rooms at Literature Wales?”

    Here we are Julian, here we are. But where are you?

  24. Which reminds me: one of Jewelian’s favoured insults for someone he suspects might be a Welsh-speaker (sniff ‘em out Jules, that’s right, they might look and sound normal on the outside, but you know they’re really just Welsh-speakers…) is to accuse them of ‘editing the Mabinogi – in Welsh!’. It’s a bizarre fixation all right, and in the example cited above we see it in its full surreal splendour.

    What a tool.

  25. I see WH Smith in Kingston don’t have an event listing for our Jewelian’s Saturday event (where, as he bizzarely puts it, he’ll be ‘treading the boards’)

    http://www.whsmith.co.uk/support/StoreDetail.aspx?StoreId=4280

    though they have one for another author. Is this a formal and invited book signing Julian, or something you’ve arranged yourself? And while I have no doubt you’ll be there, will anyone else?

    Meanwhile, do get WHS to bill you on their site – you know what happens when local people don’t get to hear about literary feasts.

  26. Well I don’t mind a debate about the state of Welsh literature, direction, where are we going wrong etc. It’s essential in my mind. What I have a problem is that he’s attacking everything without really making a case for change.

  27. You’ve both hit on something that we should pursue. Julian himself would appear neither important nor interesting enough to merit a site dedicated to discussing him. Besides, he seems to believe himself the first person ever to raise such matters as public accountability, public funding, literary integrity, self-publishing, and the use of electronic media. Moreover, his conduct so far illustrates another rule for anybody involved in cultural enterprises, namely, keep them apart from your obsolete ideological views or else you will end up with a very expensive hobby rather than a commercial operation.

    Despite this, yes, we must certainly look closer at these matters.

  28. The English haven’t got a word for entrepeneur either. It’s a French word.

    And before the English get uppity about other words, perhaps they could tell us what the English words for spaghetti, pizza, burger and petrol amongst other is?

  29. This is the same Mr Ruck that provides us with ‘gems’ like this on his blog. He doesn’t need a parody site when he writes things like this.

    Where would we be without the Sally Army?!
    I’ve got to tell you this one. I was wandering around an old haunt of mine in Suffolk last weekend. Whilst recalling the many years I lived in this flat, thatched splattered county, I bumped into an old Sally Army acquaintance of mine. Yes I know, Ruck being pals with a Sally Army soldier? Indulge me.

    Well there he was, standing rigid outside Burger King, all navy blue uniformed, sober and shaking a plastic money-box of Holy deliverance. I hadn’t seen him for a couple of years but God had obviously been kind to him; he still enjoyed a handsome face and pair of deep blue mischievous eyes. He was older than me and looked better I have to say. Almost made me turn to religion!

    As usual we fell into an easy conversation while he rattled away.

    ‘Cor, look at that,’ he suddenly observed. ‘Damn, she could sit on my face any day of the week!’ I followed his eyes for a moment and saw a pretty pair of tight buttocks leaping up the steps of the museum.

    ‘What!’ I replied a trifle shocked.’You’re a married man. Ask your missus to sit on your face if you must. Never mind the young ‘uns. According to your Army, that’s adultery even if it is only in the mind!’

    ‘Can’t do that, man,’ he said seriously, ‘that’s immoral’.

    God, does indeed work in mysterious ways.

    JR

    PS He also told me that the previous day he had taken a dose of Viagra in order to keep his demanding wife happy. ‘Sweet Lord!’, he exclaimed, ‘my tongue is still hard, man!’ It’s all true, I promise you.

  30. This is another good one, particularly funny, basically admits to being a chauvinistic drunk. This not libellous in the slightest, Mr Ruck wrote it himself. It shows a lack of critical faculties to the point where it is no wonder he has to self publish….

    The fastest Divorce on record!
    Now, like so many others who play matrimonial roulette my first spin of the wheel saw me nigh on bankrupted, drunk for a year and cursing the marriage vows to hell and back. Nothing new there I hear all you veterans of matrimonial discord confirm but before I go any further allow me to offer some humble advice – when your marriage hits the skids get a new bed-mate in tow fast, works wonders believe me even if you are drunk most of the time.

    So, what’s all this ‘fastest Divorce on record’ all about then?

    Well now, as I say my first journey into the twistable bliss called marriage ended up in the County Court, as indeed many of them do. Now you would think that at 41 I would have had some mature idea of the risks and pitfalls of such a loving committment – not so, like everyone else who embarks upon this ‘must do’ insanity, I was a daft bugger who sincerely believed that I had met the ’one’, or God forbid my ‘soul mate’ (the Guardian still uses these two supremely idiotic words of doom but I suppose they are better than a red and pink explosion from a Clinton Card shop, albeit that both are equally as nauseating).

    Anyway, the above notwithstanding I still choked my ‘I do’- tearfully and full of love I stress! – whilst deluding myself that from that day on life would be a loving merry-go-round of lip to lip breakfasts, clasped hands along exotic shorelines and imaginative exercises with a bar of soap in some four-legged, claw footed Victorian tub.

    Not so.

    Now don’t worry, I’m not going to do a ‘self-esteemed’ pitifully ‘empathetic’ bleat on you, neither am I going to enter into a pathetic rant about how horrible the missus was etc etc. You see, two years after sharing a bed together we decided (by mutual consent I hasten to add) that we really didn’t like each other very much after all and that was that. If I remember correctly my nighttime flatulence was the straw that finally broke the matrimonial camel’s back but there we are, old habits die-hard and by this time I was 43 after all. That’s my story anyway and I’m sticking to it.

    So there I was. In the local County Court office demanding a Divorce Petition. All pretty straight forward stuff you will agree until you take into account the fact that I had consumed a bottle of whisky that morning, smoked a couple of packets of good ‘ole Marlborough’s and tried to find out where the nearest gunsmith’s was located so that I could go and buy a shotgun to shoot the erstwhile Mrs Ruck.

    Well, the Court office Clerk observed my swaying, judiciously noted my blow torch breath and quite rightly advised that I seek legal advice. Well, ha ha to that, I knew only too well how much thieving legal brigands cost so to hell with those pearls of wisdom, the fellow meant well but I wasn’t having any of it.

    ‘Give me a Petition, please.’ I slurred, ‘and by the way how much does Her Majesty’s Postmaster General cost these days to file it? Worse than bloody lawyers!’

    The poor fellow was by this time in a state of flux. I was pissed but still in control – just- and seemed to know what I was going on about. Well, he looked me up and down for about the fifth time and obviously decided that discretion be the better part of valour – I was well dressed, well spoken (again ‘just’) and polite in a shambling sort of way.

    The Petition was duly handed over. I withdraw my fountain pen from my inside pocket; Divorce Petitions tend to demand the refined elegance of black ink and the occasional calligraphic swirl, in my view anyway, damn they cost enough!

    I opened the Petition and started to fill it in.

    19 minutes and 23 seconds it took to complete. I handed it back to the now utterly bemused Clerk (together with Marriage Certificate etc), who took it, checked it over a couple of times in between looking at me with dare I say it, a degree of grudging admiration.

    ‘Well sir,’ says he. ‘It’s all in order, that will be £150.00 please.’

    ‘Cheaper than the wedding I suppose.’ I remarked before handing over a cheque, turning tail and walking out in search of that bloody gunsmith’s again – oh and an Off License!

    See what I mean about ‘The fastest Divorce on record’?

    It’s true too.

    JR

    PS And do you know what? I’ve gone and done it again! Getting married that is, although I have to say that the present Mrs Ruck is always sneaking off to see a Divorce lawyer, sensible woman. I suspect it’s the nocturnal flatulence again. We never learn do we?

    Its all on his blog and it is utterly astonishing!

  31. In a similar vein from Rucky Jules blog again…

    Spreading wifely arses and Lunch Club

    Yesterday, the usual bunch of old farts were out for some good grub and a fine dose of wife bashing. As usual we all had our individual tales of woe to tell, but the tale of the day came from our lawyer friend, whose face seemed to be twitching with more anxiety than usual. He was always a trifle downcast anyway, something to do with his saying ‘I do’ apparently, but yesterday more so than usual.

    The night before he and his wife had been sitting down having supper, when he noticed his wife eating an extra slice of bread with her soup. After 30 odd years of marriage you can imagine he knew her eating habits better than his own. Anyway, he remarked quite innocently,’ You’re eating a lot tonight, dear’. Well, did he just!

    Up she leapt, ‘Are you saying I’m fat!’ She shrieked. ‘Are you? Are you? How dare you, you bastard. I’m not fat! I’m not!’ She then dashed to the kitchen sink and tipped the rest of her soup down the drain.

    Well as you can imagine, he was slightly taken aback by this sudden outburst and what he perceived as a thoroughly intemperate reaction, I mean throwing her supper down the drain, no need for that was there? But as he said, ‘Jesus boys, imagine if I’d said her arse was spreading faster than a cow pat hitting the pavement at Mac 2! Christ I wouldn’t be sitting here now, I can tell you. The bitch would have knifed me!’

    Now, for all you young ‘uns out there be warned. When women reach the sagging years of milfhood, for God’s sake never, never say anything about their weight or God forbid that their arses are spreading uncontrollably – I know one thing, if my wife sat on my face I’d be dead in seconds but be that as it may, that’s another story and a big one at that.

    So, read and learn young ‘uns. It’s all true believe me. Ask any middle-aged man whose been coping with the insanity of female kind for a good few years and he’ll tell you exactly the same.

    JR

    PS And don’t forget my latest novel is out in September, The Bent Brief. Refined hanky-panky, loving lezzies, murder, a nail-biting trial and a good dose of chauvinistic offence for good measure – just to keep the feminists happy! Nothing like my previous stuff.

    Now this is evidence of a genuinely awful writer and a character of somewhat dubious nature. He seems obsessed with farting and arses in a pretty puerile way for an authour to be doing in public.

    Whats all this sitting on faces and anal explosions all the time? Why put it out there when you are constantly berating published writers?

    He readily reveals himself to be an utter tragedy case and has not conducted himself admirably in any intelligent debate THENS WRITES THIS CRAP!!

    He has completely compromised himself intellectually whilst purporting to espouse reasoned, articulate debate. In actuality he is a chauvanistic, bitter drunk who despises the success of others and his fellow Welsh, of which I add I am one.

    Arts council grants are hardly outrageous are they and it prides me that I live in a culture where art is subsidised and valued by the state. English and Scots grants are bigger and alot more frequent but that is by the by for Jules, the grass is greener in good old England!

    Welsh publishing is more of a flegling cottage industry than a tax guzzling behemoth but again that means nothing to him. It is also profitable.

    Thge point of my previous posts is to point out the mentakl capacity of this man and to illustrate he is not to be taken seriously and I hope I have been successful in doing that.

    I would also like to add that I have tried to contribute to the debate on Julians site but I never get past moderation. He is not a fan of seeing his flimsy arguments, his boastful claims get easily picked apart.

    I can also tell you about his Waterstones Bent Brief launch but its to depressing a tale to recount in full. The staff there didn’t know he had left the building when I popped in!

    I wish him luck for Kidwelly E but what a shite concept. Luck on a human level that is, I would hate to hear of someone getting ruined by a folly when those that love them should say don’t do it! The fact of the matter is unedited E books with spelling mistakes are not the future of publishing anywhere, not just Wales.

    Also you need to base a festival around tangible items. Authors can sign books, not E books. Where in that festival could you even buy an E book? Plus you need the authors to turn up. What a disaster and I hope for his future he doesn’t repeat his disaster, festivals are hard to make money on even when on the surface they look succesful.

    Chin up Julian, England needs you!

  32. It’s worth remembering that Wikipedia doesn’t allow for people to edit their own Wikipedia entries, and if such a thing happens and it’s reported, the naughty person will get their edits deleted and will find themselves banned from the site. Or something. I think.

  33. What a load of self indulgent , ‘lad’s’ crap , by men probably nearly getting their bus passes , welshnot & timsaunders, who in my opinion display a level of spiteful ,laddish comment you’d expect from a ‘Nuts’ or ‘Loaded ‘ magazine reviewer.

    If ,in your esteemed opinions, [ and yes I can use commas too ] Julian Ruck ‘s writing is so frightful, why waste your time commenting upon it in this obsessive & repetitve manner?

    It makes one wonder who is the, ‘bent ‘ one here, doesn’t it? Grow up & get a life and write your own wonderful novels that the literary world must be holding it’s breath for.

    And , I might add, to be taken up by , “the Welsh Publishers” , now run virtually as vanity outfits for the ‘usual suspects’ of the literati,is seen by many across the Severn as a ,’ kiss of death’ rather than as any kind of accolade.Who reads this inward looking, whinging , humourless fiction with print runs of less than 800 copies anyway ? It is not even placed in mainstream fiction in Waterstones’, but ghettoised away.Only the others feeding in the gravy train of WAC subsidies I’d say.

    I’d go as far as to call this an immoral use of taxpayers money when the Welsh NHS is going down the tube and yet Welsh books , written in the English Language, I have no opinion about those in Welsh, are heavily subsidised with the presses editorial staff acting as the gatekeepers as to who gets the gravy…it makes one want to puke.

    Finally, I will not hide like a coward behind some false persona to post my comments as you , welshnot, do.What are you afraid of, dear?

  34. Thank you, gbrightmore, for your interest. Your interest in correct punctuation is to be commended, as is your courage in attempting to master it. When you have, we may hope that you will re-send your post in a form that makes your precise meaning clear.

    If I’ve apprehended your intention accurately (and I freely own that this may not, in fact, be the case, since you advance no evidence in support of your several propositions) you seem to be of one mind with those alert and courageous people who have, for decades, decried the frequent misapplication of an otherwise essentially civilized provision, namely, public support for the arts.

    You also appear to concur with me in the view that Julian’s tedious screeds merit, as things stand, no further attention. Julian, with his obsolete prejudices, his boorish expression, his exuberant ignorance of modern Wales, and his losing struggle with the English language, provided a useful illustration of much that is at fault in contemporary Welsh life.

    Good luck with your efforts, and thank you for your interest.

  35. You know Tim, for such a literary genius and expert on the wiley ways of syntax, diction, grammar etc etc do please advise this humble scribbler (and the wider world) of the work/titles you have had published?

    I wait in anticipation.

    By the way, I have been commissioned to write a weekly column for a South Wales Regional newspaper. I am more than happy to write a review about your work if you so wish.

    All the best,

    Julian Ruck

    PS I note that your ‘Cambria Team’ composes two people. Yourself and the venerable ‘Welshnot’. My audience, both blog, books and now column runs into the tens of thousands. I really think you have some catching up to do, don’t you??

  36. @Julian

    When your tutor failed to teach you grammar and rhetoric, he also omitted to teach you logic. This is no trivial matter. Valid conclusions are only reached by arguing ad rem, and any purported argument ad hominem is invalid.

    Like all writers, I welcome constructive criticism. Such would ex hypothesi be written by people who are literate, logical, and well-informed.

    You cannot spell ‘wily’ or use ‘anticipation’ correctly; are unable to construct a reasonable argument; and, thinking that ‘The Llanelli Star’ is a regional as a opposed to a local paper, are incapable of checking an OPAC, and also mistake two unassociated individuals for an editorial team. You therefore fail all three tests.

    To put it another way, you can only score a goal by kicking the ball. Kicking the man will get you sent off. That is why you once again are on the way to an early bath

  37. Julian, how about answering some of the questions I’ve left above – they are genuine questions?
    How about not blocking my comments on your blog?
    How about encouraging the clearly rather strung-out Gillian to calm down and stop accusing others of emailing her (as your only follower, she is hardly worth it).
    You have not sold thousands of copies Jules, you know that.
    Don’t be silly now.
    Just answer the questions above please.
    I have some new offerings for your blog too, so I’ll look forward to seeing them up there, you know, in the spirit of debate etc.

  38. Misogyny I see, is alive and well on this website. I would have expected no less of Welsh men of this older generation. Furthermore if we are speaking of gentlemen of so-called ‘literary’ merit I would like to draw their attention to the writing of Tony Bianchi whose novel featuring his character Harri Selwyn’s last race, ‘Ras Olaf ‘Pub.Gomer: 2012 , meriting no doubt of considerable WAC subsidy funding.

    The opening pages of this ‘masterpiece’ relate in graphic details to the chasing a mouse, no a real live Welsh one , around a room! Cutting-edge stuff I must say and a reason I would argue for transparency & accountability of the allocation of funding to Lit Wales ‘ usual suspects such as Mr.Bianchi amongst others.
    Perhaps Tony could learn something by attending a master class by someone with the international gravitas of Robert McKee thereby learning how to make the opening of a story arc, engaging and not ridiculous.

    Maybe the ‘lads’ mags’ might be interested in such ‘humour ‘ & employ him to beef up their circulation as an in-house writer when the ‘gravy train’ of Welsh funding finally stops rolling. Well some of us will live in hope.

  39. @gillian

    I haven’t read Tony Bianchi’s book, but I’d hope to persuade you that chasing a mouse is not necessarily an unfit subject for a story. Ostensibly, a story can be about anything at all – or, indeed, about nothing! In substance, of course, it may often be about something very specific indeed. I must get ‘Ras Olaf’ out of the library sometime.

    Having said that, I certainly agree that the system of funding for the arts needs reform, in Wales no less than anywhere else. I’ve got a few ideas on the matter, but you sound as if you feel very strongly. Would you consider posting an article on the subject?

  40. Here is a post to Julian’s website that he has blocked:

    I’ll be at your talk Julian, with a flier comparing your allegations about yourself (that you’ve never approached Welsh publishers) with evidence that you have, and are in fact telling porkies, with some of your choice anti-Welsh comments and some questions about your sales figures, ‘agent’ etc.

    I hope you’ll give me the chance to speak. My own FOI emails to Welsh publishers reveal that you’ve approached at least two of them. I have asked them for the correspondence pertaining to your rejection, because I’m sure it’s entertaining!

    I’ve also sent some of these corrections to the Auditor General and the political representatives you have written to with your allegations. My point to them comes in two parts: you’ve told untruths about yourself, and you’ve alleged corruption against others that you cannot prove.

    Publish this Julian, don’t disappoint us.

  41. @welshnot

    I’d hope to persuade you not to bother. His semi-literate boorishness is irritating enough on-line, and even though he’s offering £3 as an incentive to every member of the audience, £10 plus free beer would not be enough to draw me into such a masochistic experience. If you have evidence that throws light on some of his more bizarre allegations, it would be better presented here.

    Meanwhile, I hope that we might turn our attention to the recurrence of major issues (not a word I habitually use) of the sexual mistreatment of the young. This is not a matter where people should play partisan politics, although the Tories (as usual) are not letting that inhibit them. How may justice be achieved?

  42. Ask Richard Branson what he means by entrepreneur ,why don’t you. This is a boring exchange & I’ve better things to do than to read such self-indugent trivia. Get a real life and stop bullying people in cyberspace: QED

  43. @gillian

    You seem to be replying to points I haven’t made. Since we’re evidently involved in separate conversations, this exchange is now ended.

  44. Dear Gillian,
    I’m glad you put the word ‘real’ in inverted commas in the context of your own writing. Like Julian, you think inverted commas give emphasis, but as anyone who writes properly must know, it confers distance, not to say irony, upon the word it qualifies. Here, that word is ‘writing’. In fact I think you should have put that in inverted commas too.

  45. Sadly welshnut ,you have totally missed the point here re: my use of inverted commas.
    IT WAS IRONIC. ..
    I had in mind that pathetic series of books , published at taxpayers expense of course, on ,’Real Cardiff ‘ …by Bike etc etc.spawned by the ex- CE of Academi and a series that has spread like a vicious virus throughout Wales infecting other areas with much of the factual material not correct.
    As only the already converted to your way of thinking read this long-winded blog ,besides Julian & myself of course, I thought the irony might have been picked up. Anyway,as I am bowing out please don’t NOT send me email updates as I’ve no wish to play semantics anymore, but will get on with , life shall we say, with or without, commas.
    Btw did you people know that Mr.Ruck is to address the London Welsh Club in the New Year?

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